Cypress Debuts Design Example for Fluorescent Dimming Ballast

11/18/2003 - Cypress MicroSystems Inc., a subsidiary of Cypress Semiconductor Corporation (NYSE: CY), announced availability of an electronic ballast design example using its award-winning Programmable System on ChipTM(PSoCTM) mixed-signal array with an embedded microcontroller. The flexibility of PSoC allows the design engineer to streamline the development of electronic lighting systems. This design example highlights the single-chip electronic dimming ballast controller that includes Digital Addressable Lighting Interface (DALI) communication capability. The PSoC family of products provides an easy-to-use, cost-effective solution for engineers building advanced lighting designs.

Thirty to forty percent of the energy used in a typical building is for lighting,” said Nathan John, director of strategic marketing for Cypress MicroSystems. “DALI ballasts enable central digital control of fluorescent lighting fixtures, providing the capability to dim individual fixtures in response to changes in ambient light; this “light harvesting” results in substantial energy savings. Using PSoC, designers can quickly implement complete DALI lighting solutions that are fast, inexpensive and highly reliable.”

The PSoC lighting solution enables 1-100% dimming (per DALI spec EN60929), yielding a considerable energy saving. PSoC manages both the ballast control functions as well as the communication between lighting fixtures and their controllers. This is in contrast to other solutions on the market that require two devices to perform the dimming ballast capability: one chip to control the ballast function and one chip to manage the communication interface. PSoC-based electronic ballast designs typically require a bill of materials with fewer than 90 parts, contributing to a considerable cost reduction over competing solutions.

The PSoC Lighting product family is based on Cypress’s reconfigurable mixed-signal array with an on-board controller. PSoC devices offer a highly integrated mix of analog and digital logic, memory and processing circuitry in one small package. In contrast, traditional microcontroller-based solutions require additional chips to perform functions such as signal amplification, filtering, analog-to-digital conversion, LCD control, and real-time clock generation. By leveraging PSoC’s flexible hardware resources and intuitive development software, designers can not only reduce development time and costs but can also easily adapt their designs to match the unique requirements of each system.

About the PSoC Family
Programmable System on Chip (PSoC) devices are high-performance, field-programmable, mixed-signal arrays with on-board microcontrollers for high-volume embedded-control functions in consumer, industrial, office automation, telecom and automotive applications. PSoC devices integrate programmable blocks of analog and digital logic, a fast 8-bit CPU, 8 to 16 Kbytes of flash memory and 256 bytes of SRAM. The PSoC family includes pre-programmed, specialized versions for lighting, energy, motor control, communications, automotive and battery applications. Each family member comes with a reference design and extensive application notes to speed application development.

PSoC devices provide designers with a flexible architecture that can be configured for a broad range of embedded applications and dynamically reconfigured to extend the capabilities and value of their product.

The PSoC platform typically reduces customer development time by 33% and lowers bill of material costs by an average of $5 by significantly reducing the number of chips required for solutions utilizing a traditional microcontroller and discrete digital and analog components.

Price and Availability
Customers starting PSoC designs may purchase the Basic Development Kit, for $399. This kit—which includes a full featured emulator, as well as software, documentation and samples—allows engineers to be immediately productive on their PSoC designs. The kit is can be purchased from licensed distributors or directly from the Cypress On-Line store.

About Cypress MicroSystems
Headquartered in Lynnwood, Wash., Cypress MicroSystems develops and markets Programmable System-on-Chip (PSoC) devices—high-performance, field-programmable ICs for high-volume embedded control functions in consumer, industrial, office automation, telecom and automotive applications. Established as a subsidiary of Cypress Semiconductor Corporation (NYSE: CY) in the fourth quarter of 1999, Cypress MicroSystems’ stockholders are its employees and Cypress Semiconductor. The close association with Cypress Semiconductor allows access to their process and design technology, and field sales and applications forces. More information about Cypress MicroSystems and its products—as well as access to over 100 PSoC applications notes—is available online at

About Cypress
Cypress Semiconductor Corporation (NYSE: CY) is Connecting From Last Mile to First MileTM with high-performance solutions for personal, network access, enterprise, metro switch, and core communications-system applications. Cypress ConnectsTM using wireless, wireline, digital, and optical transmission standards, including USB, Fibre Channel, SONET/SDH, Gigabit Ethernet, and DWDM. Leveraging its process and system-level expertise, Cypress makes industry-leading physical layer devices, framers, and network search engines, along with a broad portfolio of high-bandwidth memories, timing technology solutions, and reprogrammable mixed-signal arrays. More information about Cypress is accessible online at

Cypress and the Cypress logo are registered trademarks of Cypress Semiconductor Corporation. “Connectivity From Last Mile to First Mile” and “Cypress Connects” are trademarks of Cypress. “Programmable System on Chip,” PSoC and PSoC Designer are trademarks of Cypress MicroSystems.

Previous Page | News by Category | News Search

If you found this page useful, bookmark and share it on: